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Pope Francis Urges African Prelates to ‘Remain Strengthened’

The message from the Holy See was read by the Apostolic Nuncio to Uganda His Excellency Archbishop Luigi Bianco at Rubaga Cathedral where all bishops in Africa converged for mass ahead of the SECAM’s 18th plenary.

Audio 3

His Holiness Pope Francis has urged the Catholic Church in Africa under the stewardship of the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) to remain firm in spreading Gods gospel across the continent.  

The message from the Holy See was read by the Apostolic Nuncio to Uganda His Excellency Archbishop Luigi Bianco at Rubaga Cathedral where all bishops in Africa converged for mass ahead of the SECAM’s 18th plenary.  

The Holy Father notes that if the prelates remain strong, the great work of evangelization will continue thriving on the continent. The vicar of Christ also sent prayers to those who will attend the SECAM plenary.   

//Cue in; “His holiness Pope Francis…  

Cue out…continent of Africa. ”//  

Pope Francis was expected to bless the golden jubilee celebration of continental forum's which was inaugurated in Uganda by Pope Paul VI in 1969 during what was referred to as the first visit by a pope to Africa in modern times. However, amid high anticipation, the Pope cancelled the invitation which would lead to his second trip to Uganda.   

Meanwhile, while delivering the day’s homily, Archbishop Gabriel Charles Palmer-Buckle, from Cape Coast-Ghana, noted that the Catholic Church in Africa deserves to celebrate for its steady growth even amid a sea of challenges. He, however, says as they celebrate, they also a need to look ahead and plan for the misty future.   

//Cue in; “first and foremost…  

Cue out…super abundantly.”//  

Archbishop Buckle recalled the ‘prophecy’ by Pope Paul VI who foresaw and declared the African Church a grown one, saying it was high time Africa got its own Shepherd and preach to itself in what he termed African Christianity. 

//Cue in; “it was here... 

Cue out…the universal church.”//  

This evening, all African Bishops are expected to start off their 18th SECAM plenary where they will reflect on the journey of 50 years and plan how they will lead the flock of the lord for the years come. The plenary will be held at Speke Resort Munyonyo.  

At the end of the weekly meeting, the prelates will adopt a declaration which will give direction on where the Church in Africa should be in the next 50 years, in terms of pastoral priorities.   The climax of the SECAM assembly will be blessed with Mass at the Uganda Martyrs Shrine, Namugongo on July 28.